Saturday, January 6, 2018

Dan of West Seattle's Peel & Press


Dear Dan,

First, let me say you weren’t initially on my list at all—I didn’t even know your name until I looked up the website tonight.  At this point I still only know half of it.  My wife and I ordered another House Pizza at Peel and Press tonight, and I was reminded of another thing I have to be thankful for—the best friggin’ pizza pie in the Pacific NW, if not the planet.  My holiday muffin top is purring like a tiger in a poppy field even as I peck out this draft.

I will soon be avoiding Peel and Press for at least a month . . . you know, until I unceremoniously retire the annually renewed resolution of a tattoo-worthy Thor-like physique.  But I will be back, because you offer something that makes the average dad-bod worth some ballast.  For that I am very grateful.

It’s your flagship pie—the House Pizza.  The crust isn’t too thick or too thin.  It has a satisfying crispness, followed by just enough chew to make it the perfect complimentary topping transporter.  Thank God for gluten . . .  A slice is just strong, pliable, and insulating enough to precariously balance on two hands (flat or folded) and support the ingeniously orchestrated mound of fresh cheese, pepperoni, sausage, peppers, mushrooms, onions, and olives even as they settle into the perfect amount of hot, flavor-packed tomato sauce on its short journey from plate to mouth.

Who engineered this thing?  You’ve captured the mystical enchantment previously hidden somewhere between thin crust and deep dish.  I’ve been in the habit for some time now of rolling up a couple of pizza butts— those residual cardboard breadsticks of tough crust that most pies sport as an afterthought— in a napkin, pocketing them as a treat for my Border Collie, Daisy.  I haven’t told her, because I don’t want her to hate you.  But as I work my way through an acute slice of magic, from the pointy-end to its shortest side, I suddenly look down to see only my olive oil anointed fingertips reaching hungrily for another slice.  I’m sorry, Daisy, there’s nothing left to give.  The treat was all mine.

We’re moving a short distance across the water to Vashon Island in the next month or so.  It’s a little easier now that the best biscuits on the planet aren’t being made near the intersection of California and Oregon.  Alas, Fiddlehead is no more!  But I will be back now and again for your pizza.  It has no equal.

Thank you for what you do,

Daniel Loffer

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